Sunset Wellness FebMar 2024

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Wellness West in the

Ultimate Dude Ranch Reset The Healing Power of Snow Sustainable Seafood Feast



Find it all in one place.


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Soaking it all in at Colorado's Taylor River Lodge.


Editor’s Letter On finding your (blue) zone.

Best of the West


Dude ranches then and now; a guide to #softlife; new nonalcoholic aperitifs.

Home & Garden

13 Blame It on the Rain

How a minimalist garden designed for managing monsoons delivers sleek sophistication no matter the weather.

Mexico 20 New Maximalism A stately Albuquerque home is elegant and eclectic in equal parts.

32 Checklist


Layered vegetable gardens; statement plants; how to prep your garden for spring.


Idea House Workbook


Floor-to-ceiling folding doors turn a poolside addition into an indoor-outdoor haven.

Food & Drink

41 Wine by Design


Modernist California architecture, forwardlooking wine, and multicultural cuisine converge at a pool party at the Hollywood home of the couple behind Ashes & Diamonds winery.

50 Down by the Sea

Recipes for sustainable seafood from Santa Monica beachside restaurant Crudo e Nudo.

to connect with the cold in new, meaningful ways, no resort pass required.

Travel & Escapes Dude Ranch, 63 The Reimagined Wyoming’s Reid Creek Lodge is giving guests a transformative taste of the West—and a glimpse of a new generation of ranches.

76 Slow Snow

Taylor River Lodge in Colorado offers winter activities that allow guests

86 Insider Guides

North Shore and Upcountry Maui; Banff and Lake Louise, Alberta; Venice, California

Voices of the West


Anima Mundi’s Adriana Ayales on the healing power of plants.


Living the ranch life at Reid Creek Lodge. Photograph by TH O MAS J. STO RY




A Toast to Wellness


Michael A. Reinstein



Sarah Yang


Michael Wilson PHOTO EDITOR

Christine Bobbish

It’s hard to talk about wellness these days without someone bringing up Blue Zones, the Wellness can mean a plant-forward meal, book and TV show that examine communities a good read, and a glass of wine. around the world with the highest rates of longevity and happiness: idyllic spots—Okinawa, Sardinia, Ikaria, Greece, and, in our very own backyard, Loma Linda, California—packed with fit and joyous people. In these places, people tend to prioritize community, plant-forward ­diets, gratitude, spending time in nature, service to others, play, and, I’m happy to report, sometimes enjoying a little wine, intermittently and socially. I bring this last point up by way of expanding the definition of wellness a bit as we explore it in this issue. In these pages you’ll find a story on the restorative power of snow (spending time in nature!) and a tour of a desert garden that not only gives an architect’s parents a serene retreat but also captures the monsoon rains in Sedona to restore a native habitat (service!). We also visit Crudo e Nudo, a beachy, life-affirming restaurant in Santa Monica that treats its employees, the ocean, and its community well, with sustainable seafood and fresh vegetables (gratitude!). We hit the awe-inspiring wide-open spaces of the West in a story on the modern dude ranch revival (more nature!). And we take that Blue Zones advice of drinking a bit of minimal-intervention wine at a pool party with the proprietors of Ashes & Diamonds winery in a mid-century home that’s right-sized and human-centered in its design. These stories and more make the case that good living, good design, and, yes, a little good wine can be good for you, too. If you’re looking for another way to live the good life and do good at the same time, consider joining us in Palm Springs this year at Modernism Week, the eleven-day celebration of mid-century modern design and culture that also funds a scholarship program that has, since its inception, awarded nearly $300,000 to deserving Coachella Valley students pursuing education in architecture and design. With home tours, talks, nightly parties, walking and biking tours, and more, the festival runs February 15–25, 2024. Tickets are available at


Thomas J. Story


Krista Simmons


Kristin Guy


Christine Lennon


Matt Gross


Nicole Clausing


Camille Styles


Jamie Elliott

Sales & Marketing SVP, MEDIA SOLUTIONS

Mort Greenberg



Kathleen Craven HEAD OF TRAVEL


Kristi Rummel


Kelly Facer


Mindy Morgan


Tracy Seng


—Hugh Garvey, E D ITO R-I N - CH I E F

Megan Giordano Sunset Media International Corporation




Copyright ©2024 S. Media International Corporation. All rights reserved. Reproduction in whole or in part without written permission is prohibited. No responsibility is assumed for unsolicited submissions. Manuscripts, photographs, and other material submitted to P.O. Box 15688 Beverly Hills, CA 90209 can be acknowledged or returned only if accompanied by a self-addressed, stamped envelope. For assistance with your Sunset subscription, call 1-800-777-0117 or email




Tom Griffiths Graydon Sheinberg



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Ranch Life


For nearly a century, we’ve chronicled a vacation trend with uniquely Western roots. Here’s how to reclaim the romance of the dude ranch.

Guests at Ranchlands in Colorado can ride and learn crafts like leatherworking.




In 1941, Sunset covered a burgeoning travel trend called the dude ranch. These farms-turned-resorts were, the editors wrote, “open to guests who want a leisurely vacation, who like to ride or want to learn, and who want to shed city ways and be part of a real ranch family for a time. Some people call them dudes, but we like to think of them as explorers of the Old West—and the new.” Over the years, we revisited the topic, including in an exhaustive survey in 1955 that mapped ranches throughout the West. Today the dude-ranch getaway remains a uniquely Western one and still holds a strong appeal among city dwellers who long to be surrounded by nature, crossing earth on horseback away from the rhythms of the city, eating food grown and raised on the very same land under wide open sky. Read about how the formula has evolved in our feature story on modern dude ranches in our travel section, and whether you chose to visit a dude ranch or just want to channel the feeling, consider outfitting yourself properly for your next sojourn out onto the range.



TECOVAS JAMIE COWGIRL BOOT Both ranch- and restaurant-appropriate, Tecovas’ stylish update on the

classic cowgirl boot remains the leader of the pack.

$ 4 2 5, t e c o v a s.c o m

Stories and ads in Sunset celebrated the dude ranch.

FILSON X STETSON EAGLE RANCH HAT IN SAGE The Seattle outfitter joined forces with the Texas hatmaker for this heirloomquality, leather-and-silk-lined, naturally water-resistant fur felt hat. $ 375, f i l s o n.c o m

The Fine Art of Soft Living

Want to give up the grind and embrace the art of ease? Here’s a roadmap that’s manageable even for the most anxious of type-As. Story by KRI STA S I M M O N S


The grind, the hustle, staying in your bag. No matter how you phrase it, it’s exhausting. Which is perhaps why #softlife is making waves in popular culture, and in the world of wellness. A foil to the toxic productivity that plagues modern society, soft living, which originated within a Nigerian community of content creators, is about slowing down and allowing ease and intentional flow into your life. While that all may sound woo-woo, the principles of soft living—prioritizing sleep, taking moments for self-care, and connecting intentionally with others—are really all part of living mindfully. Here are some ways to integrate these principles into your daily life.

S E L F - CA R E Taking the time to develop a

proper skin-care regimen isn’t just great for your visage. It’s also about carving out quiet

time dedicated to you. Alpyn Beauty is one of our favorite

brands on the market for self-

care. Truly putting the “soft” in soft living, their products are

made using ingredients from

the wild frontier of Jackson Hole, Wyoming, where they work with

local botanists and farmers, using a process of no-harm harvesting to identify wild plants

with the most power to repair

and hydrate skin. One bonus is that when you purchase their products, like the luxe Super

Peptide & Ghostberry Barrier

moisturizer, they give back to

the Grand Teton National Park

Foundation’s rewilding project. $28–$62, ALPYNBEAUTY.COM







According to the CDC, one in three

everything from collaborations

A big part of #softlife is living intentionally, and it’s

lack of sleep not only makes us

meditation classes and curated

Moves journal, created by Los Angeles–based well-

groggy, dampens productivity, and puts us in a foul mood, but has

some pretty serious side effects,

with functional medicine doctors to bathtub rituals, all geared toward

optimizing recovery. Want to bring

the journey into the home? Try inte-

correlating with obesity and diabe-

grating an Oura ring, a sleek wear-

berge Resorts, Malibu Beach Inn,

REM sleep, and sleep quality, as

tes. Rosewood Hotel Group, Au-

and the Hotel Figueroa are among

the many in the West offering sleep tourism programs that can include

able that tracks resting heart rate,

well as real-time stress levels, giving the user tangible data to work with. FROM $299, OURARING.COM

hard to do that without a plan in place. The Mantra

ness instructor Vanessa Dunn, does just that, guiding you through the steps of manifesting the life you

want, first through establishing exactly what fulfill-

ment in each facet of your life would look like—mind, home, social, purpose, love, career—and then meditating daily with mantras and gratitude practices to get you there. I’ve gone through this journal three

times, and each time I’m impressed by how the intentions come to fruition. $45, FLOWWITHVANESSA.COM


SCENTS There’s something about lighting a great candle that ignites a moment of pause,

bringing rituals that signify a slowing down in the day can help trigger the brain to

know it’s time to soften and relax. Enlighten candles are hand-poured, essential-oilbased fragrances inspired by the healing energy of the beautiful Sonoran Desert of Arizona, where the company is based, with scents like the orange blossom, which

smells just like Palm Springs when the flowers are in bloom, and saguaro blossom, which evokes memories of the desert rain. $12–$28, ENLIGHTENCANDLES.COM




Americans is sleep-deprived. This


Our American Artisanal Simple Syrups, Extracts, and Bar Mixers are created by hand using only the highest quality authentic ingredients – perfect for the bartender, barista, baker, chef, and you. @sonomasyrupco | INFUSED WITH REAL FRUIT, JUICE, PEELS , VANILLA BEANS , SPICES , AND BOTANICALS .

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Action hero and Trejo’s Tacos jefe Danny Trejo has been sober for over 50 years and has put his name on a smooth and balanced zero-proof tequila alternative that empowers non-imbibers to make perfect Palomas and hangover-free margaritas. $36, TREJOSSTORE.COM


Inspired by the flavors of amaro, this nonalcoholic digestif from restaurant veteran Brittany Naing (former beverage director at the Dutchess in Ojai) is made with locally sourced chicory, gentian, cloves, coriander, and more. Deeply spiced, luscious, and just the right amount of sweet, it’s ideal for mixing with soda or sipping over rocks. $43, DRINKNAMARI.COM


SOCIAL CONNECTION If you’re trying to be every-

depleted after high-energy

gym, yoga studio, Pilates

once, burnout is inevitable.

dinner meetings, making

an area for saunas and cold

thing, everywhere, all at

That’s why boundary setting and intentional socializing

are so important. The social battery can really get


happy hours and indulgent wellness-centered social spaces like the newly

opened Hume in Venice

worth looking into. With a full


room, rooftop lounge, and

plunges, this members-only club is exactly the place to network with other health-

minded city dwellers. HUME.LA

Hood ,Oregon– based Wilderton is the first nonalcaholic distillery and tasting room in the nation. Their Earthen bottling is made with pinesmoked tea, peppercorns, and cardamom, and is smooth, slightly spicy, and lovely mixed with ginger ale over ice. $37, WILDERTONFREE.COM



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Blame It On The Rain

How a minimalist garden designed for managing monsoons delivers sleek sophistication no matter the weather. Story by D EAN NA KIZ I S and KRI STI N G UY Photographs by TH O MAS J. STO RY



he term minimalism isn’t always associated with gardens, but this stone-on-stone outdoor space in Sedona, Arizona, has a decidedly minimalist feel. Which is not to say it is all about looks alone. Just the opposite: This garden was built to channel and absorb the monsoon rains that hit this part of Arizona every summer. The newly built home and garden was created with VIP clients in mind—the designer’s parents. Colin Cleland, a partner at the architecture firm Schiller Projects in New York, says he felt proud that his parents loved his work enough to have him design the home where they wanted to “age gracefully in place.” The site, Cleland says, was tricky. “It is deeply sloped and challenging



both to build on and drain water off of,” he says, adding, “Sedona is in the high desert, which means the house has to react to a wide range of weather conditions.” Cleland approached these conditions by carefully paying attention to the natural topography of the landscape. At the home’s entrance, a 60-foot-long bridge leads to the house from the road. Underneath, a gravel-and-rock channel directs rainwater under the bridge and away from the home. To emphasize the view and the sunset, the gravel they chose contains a complementary shade of light pink. “Because of the commanding views, we really saw the landscape and the plants as the foreground to the mountains that form the background,” he says. The rock channel brings the water around to the back of the home where there is a stormwater retention pond that was built with rock found on-site. “It’s essentially a rock drainage area that is just a lined basin that allows water to sit in it in times of extreme conditions,”

Homeowners Carole and George Cleland stand on a 60-foot-long bridge that was designed to avoid interrupting the overflow channels during monsoon season while also reducing erosion.

River-rock-lined retention channels capture and slow down rainwater while creating visual interest and providing supplemental deep irrigation for surrounding plantings.

Cleland explains. This way if a big monsoon comes, the water is directed to the retention area and doesn’t flow into the arroyo below, which can flood. As for the plants, Cleland partnered with specialist Larry Anderson, of Anderson Landscaping. The idea was to be “light on the land” while eschewing non-native species. Around the retention pond, they planted Overdam grass and scrub oak, both of which have a strong enough root structure to survive that close to a drainage area. As the garden matures, the grass will fill in the gaps, while ‘Blue Ice’ Arizona cypress trees add contrast and really pop. (When these trees grow in, they’ll also provide privacy.) Elsewhere on the property, they used strawberry hedgehog cactuses, banana yuccas, and agaves. “These plants are lower profile than what you’d see in Phoenix,” says Cleland. “Sedona is at 4,350 feet above sea level so we’re really only dealing with cactuses that make this a special place.”





To emphasize the view and the colors of the sunset, light pink gravel was chosen to complement the commanding views and natural surroundings.



The Anatomy of a Monsoon Garden


1 2


No matter where you live, any chance to capture water

within a landscape is incredibly important to the ecosys-

tem. Cleland points out that “a monsoon garden is really a

broader response to regional needs, whereas a rain garden is usually a localized solution to an individual property.”

Monsoon gardens are intended to respond to a substantial

amount of rainfall and flooding and to account for extremes in the climate to avoid inundating the infrastructure of a

community. For the Sedona house, the intent was to retain

water on the property and not overwhelm the arroyo behind it.


For this particular project, Cleland’s team benefited from it being a new construction and did not inherit any poor

drainage planning. If you’re working with a site that has existed uninterrupted for many years, respect how it drained

naturally throughout that period and take cues for any additional infrastructure. Cleland encourages you “to not just

think How do we get water off of the property? but How and why is water coming onto it, and what is my responsibility

to the water once it comes to my site?” He adds: “A holistic

approach includes understanding the appropriate rock and ground cover, the plants themselves, and the functioning of what the house is doing all at the same time. When functioning in unison, it can be a very rewarding process.”





When dealing with sudden submersion, it’s important to plan ahead on how moisture will move throughout the property. Here Cleland

provides three key questions to ask yourself when planning on adding additional support and preparing the landscape for monsoons.

Where is water going to be coming

from, and what is it first interacting with on-site? The first line of defense is what is used on the

ground. The majority of the Sedona property is covered in small-diameter rock cover, so a pink tone material was chosen to specifically

celebrate the beauty of the sur-

rounding Red Rock Mountains. This

material choice allows for drainage without fighting against the land, while also allowing water to flow through to its final destination. •

Once water meets the ground,

where does it go, and how does it

get there? With monsoons, it’s im-

perative to avoid extensive erosion

of the landscaping and around the

building foundation. Cleland incorporated a 60-foot-long bridge into the design in order to avoid inter-

rupting these channels. “When water is coming from the house’s

overflow scuppers,” he notes, “we

built in rock ‘splash pads’ at these locations to essentially break the fall of the water coming down.”



When looking for plants that will assist

in creating resiliency and longevity, it’s most important to understand the region you’re working in. For the Sedona project, Cleland’s team kept as many of the existing shrubs and trees as

possible: beautiful Arizona cypresses, manzanita, scrub oak, and piñon

pines. Keeping and favoring native

plants is imperative to creating a resilient and long-lived landscape.

If you need to add new plant mate-

rials on-site, consider like-minded

shrubs and trees that help absorb wa-

ter along the rock channels and retention ponds on the property. Cleland

worked with Anderson Landscaping to add more than a dozen ‘Blue Ice’ Ari-

zona cypresses, desert willows, man-

zanita ‘Dr Hurd,’ mountain mahogany, pink and white oleanders, and New Mexican desert olive in addition to

three purpleleaf plum trees. These

plants now offer seasonal color and architectural interest with a natural,

relaxed beauty that complements the modern home’s design.

These areas will be the first to show

signs of erosion and failure, leaning into those needs with the opportunity for design aesthetics. For the

Sedona house, they chose large-

diameter, gray river rock as a way

to functionally perform and create

a contrasting tone to the surrounding pink rock cover. •

How does water stay and then

eventually leave the site? Cleland

suggests thinking of this as a temporary water feature, where water is allowed to stay on-site while

slowing the flow into other areas.

Consider a retention pond, which is completely lined with a drainage

mat and covered over with larger stones. The drainage mat avoids

long term degradation of the pond while providing the resiliency

needed to withstand extreme con-

ditions. Retaining water for a longer period on-site also allows plants and trees to thrive through deep watering.



Cleland recommends people “evolve with the property and not put themselves in a situation where they’re

working against the land.” Most important, monitor your system after a sig-

nificant rain event to determine if there are weak spots. By identifying any

needs for additional rocks or soil to

create high spots, or additional chan-

nels created to reorient a more natural flow of water, the land will tell you when something is not working.





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that Richard and Kirsten Lee Farmer don’t take their home, or themselves, too seriously is that they named their house in New Mexico after what is essentially an Irish country party pad. “We call it the Ramble after ‘ramble houses’ in Ireland,” Kirsten says from her vibrant home office, with its teal painted ceiling and graphic ikat walls. A ramble is a community gathering spot, a place where residents of a province or small city would get together for entertainment, music, recitations, stories, and jokes. In other words, it’s a place designated for fun, where enterprising people figure out how to bring joy and beauty. And that’s exactly what the creative couple and their young son, Hank, have done since they returned to Kirsten’s hometown, quite by accident, back in 2020, and moved into a stately four-bedroom Mediterranean-style house. “We lived in Los Angeles for 24 years,” Kirsten says. “Coming back to Albuquerque was never part of the plan, but here we are. It’s all because of this house, which really opened our minds to so many possibilities.” The long, unexpected journey “home” began back in 2018. Kirsten, who works as a global luxury retail real-estate executive, and Richard, a director



and owner of a production company, were paying attention to the filming boom that was happening in New Mexico. They were hungry for a creative outlet and a potential second home near Kirsten’s parents and focused their initial search in Santa Fe. After two unsuccessful attempts to buy a home there, they spotted this neglected 1940s-era treasure near downtown Albuquerque in the Huning Castle neighborhood, which they’d admired for years during the annual, candlelit luminaria tour at Christmas. The house occupied two full city lots, and was originally built by the Carson family, distant relatives of outlaw Kit. The stone used to construct the massive fireplace, which is original to the house, is embedded with scores of fossils, and is the same stone used in the construction of the Albuquerque Museum. The second owners, the Bates lumber family,

Clock wise from rig ht: Schu macher Zimba wa llp aper in ebony and a Su za nn e Ka sler Solei l ceiling lig ht ma ke a bold ceiling statement. Ar ch itect Ev an Geisler, Heather and Matt French , and cont rac tor David Ka meron Cheney have all be come friends. Dr aper y in a pin k br ushstroke pr int by De sig n Legacy K’one al adds a gr aphic pu nch to the pr im ar y bedroom. Mi lk gla ss pend ant lig ht Hudson Va lle y Lig ht ing.



installed an intricate “book match” wooden floor, made with sliced wood blocks laid like tile into a brick pattern. By the time it came on the market in 2018, only the historic charm remained intact. But once the Farmers managed to look past the motorized stair chair that had been installed in the great room, the indoor pool structure that had been tacked onto the rear of the house, and the aging electrical and plumbing systems, all they saw was potential. top lef t: The Clock wise from “The idea was e in the fireton es lim d fossil ize that we would rene sa me math is d un place su rro uquerque Alb e ovate this treath ter ial used at hu macher Fern sure, and then Mu seum . The Sc a backdrop Tree wa llpaper is lease it out to movar t. The rn ste We e tag for vin ie people because creamy its th wi , liv ing room g, and ru e tag there’s so much wh ite wa lls, vin ch Black firefilming happening Fa rro w & Ba ll Pit country, a litplace is a lit tle bit here,” she says. “We l. rol d an ck ro tle bit had to perform quite a bit of surgery on it. So we assembled an A team to help us. We hired architect Evan Geisler of Geisler Projects. We had seen his work on a couple of historic homes in Los Angeles and loved it. Then we found Kameron Cheney, who had collaborated on the expansion of the nearby Los Poblanos inn, which we love, and then the wonderful Heather French of French & French Interiors. We had this trifecta of awesomeness.” According to French, the initial state of the house might have scared off less intrepid buyers. The layout was challenging, with a series of small, tight rooms designed for domestic staff and no flow to speak of, and a jumbled interior mash-up of French silk wallpaper and faux-wood paneling that everyone, except for the Farmers, thought was truly hideous. “That paneling was the inspiration for so many of the ’70s details of the house, like the avocado green paint,” says French. “Coming in, we had to have respect for what was there before, like the curved staircase and the hallway, the oval window on the second floor, and the long gallery that connects the kitchen and the great room. Fixing the flow and updating the house was a massive two-year



Clock wise from lef t: Cu rta ins made with ma rb lized velvet from Beata Heum an and vintage ha rdwa re. Ch ef Jav ier Mont ano ar range s the ca su al Southwestern fea st he made for the occa sion. Moss- green Arch itectonics til e, a blackand-brass FiveS tar range, and a boldly veine d Ca mbria stone counter top up the de sig n ga me in the kitchen .

inted lack pa P itch B s accents, inA : ft e L as a nd br works faucet v a n it y r a Wate y sconces, g in d r clu a r a Ba r ont r a st to b r a B a nd n n ing c os w a llu t s a m a ke x ica n t u s Me le y. t he Cac Ne w ton Pa is ble y ta b r m e r p fa a p ge A v inta a ir s embody t: h ig R de r n c h aes a nd mo r n-Wester n . e e d o lo m er s v t he h e Fa r m t het ic t



project, though.” Painstaking effort was made to restore the intricate wooden floor. Each of the wood blocks was removed, numbered, restored, and then replaced in the exact original formation—like a puzzle. And incorporating the Farmer’s confident, somewhat irreverent taste into a house that is inherently formal took some finesse. “At first, they were not interested in floral patterns and wanted more of a spare, white upholstered backdrop to work with, but we pushed back in the areas where we felt we could dream bigger,” says French. The decor, as a result, is a refreshing mix of tribal prints with a Marfahipster edge and more formal, sophisticated florals. There’s plenty of bold pattern and unexpected color, but also enough space to let the couple’s A nn Sacks tu m in a herr ingb bled gr ay ti les on ru st ic but re e patter n feel fi ned. K ir st en Lee Fa rmer in he r home of fi ce, which inco rpor ates he r lo ve of tr ibal patter n and elec tr ic color. T he glos sy ceili ng is Va rdo by Fa rrow & Ba ll. Br as s- andglass lig ht fi xt French & Fr ure designed by ench .

eclectic art collection shine. “It’s fun and playful but there’s a sophisticated undertone to the whole house. That’s very much Richard and Kirsten,” says French. “They’re serious but don’t take themselves too seriously.” See the permanent D.J. table in the corner of the massive great room, ready for a dance party at a moment’s notice, for confirmation. In the spring of 2020, the project was completed and the paint was barely dry when the quarantine era began. The Farmers had sold their California house and relocated to Manhattan the year before. Grounded in the city, with no work or school obligations, the timing was uncanny. Why stay cooped up in a city



apartment when this grand house and spacious yard sat empty? “We thought we’d come to New Mexico and get the house set up for a couple of months,” says Kirsten. “But right away, Richard understood that this was a magical place. He got it immediately, but it took me a minute to come to that point of acceptance. I didn’t want to admit that we were residents. We live here now.” The charms of a slower-paced life were self-evident pretty quickly. They bought a house across the street for Kirsten’s parents. Richard founded a local production company, Inspirado, that was an instant success, diving into commercial, film, and television shoots. Hank enrolled in the local 100-year-old elementary school,

Arch itect Evan Geisler and the French & French team designed a dram atic hallw ay to connect the dining room to the great room , with the living room on one side and the media room on the other, with a dram atic black-and-white checkerboard floor.

which is walking distance from their house. And the couple has embraced the emerging food, arts, and culture scene in the state’s capital. “Everybody loves Santa Fe, blah blah blah,” says Kirsten, with a laugh. “It’s beautiful there, sure. But Albuquerque? There are so many cool people who live here. There are so many exciting things happening. You can tell by how many cranes are visible in town. That’s always a real sign of growth.” The most irresistible part? “I can leave my house for a business trip and be at my gate in the airport in 15 minutes.” And then there’s the trip back home. That’s easier than the Farmers ever imagined.

patio up onto the Doors open ee flow between fr r fesal lo w ing fo and al fresco the kitchen r ca n te un co e le th tivities whi ba r. imprompt u serve as an ted port ra it in pa A : ft Belo w le an k, is er s’ son, H of the Fa rm ed treact lle co by su rrou nded al l of : A si ng le w su res. R ig ht ig in al or , er ap al lp si lk flor al w or guest room , -f lo to a second touched. rem ai ns un



ted a c i t his p o s h ’s a y muc rious e r e r e t th t’s ve y’re s u b a e l, yfu se. Th ten. Th sly.” a l u p nd ole ho d Kirs seriou a n s fu he wh ard an es too ’ t I t “ h Ric mselv e to n o the ert d e n k u ta n’t o d but



In the new release The Layered Edible Garden, author Christina Chung teaches us how to create beautiful and productive low maintenance gardens.



The transition from late winter to early spring is a delightful period of preparation, planting, and tending. Here’s how to make the most of this season of anticipation. Story by KRI STI N G UY

PLANT Now is the best time to plant

strawberries! Pluck off any


blooms until the first wave of

warm weather to concentrate

the plant’s fruiting energy into

large sweet berries rather than small tart ones.

Add herbs as landscaping ac-

cents. Try tucking in chives and other alliums for spear-like

spring blooms or rosemary and woolly thyme for attractive,

drought-tolerant ground covers.

nitrogen in the root nodules will

applying healing calendula lo-

developing beans. Lay plants on

your garden gloves.

be transferred out of the soil into

tion or cream before putting on

top of soil to break down as


green manure for improved soil

It’s time to do routine inspec-


tions on raised garden beds.

Divide yarrow and replant as

ground covers and lawn alternatives. For easy separation, water the area the day before to ease

Tackle any repairs, add a fresh

coat of protective stain, and in-

stall any necessary gopher wire beneath the soil line before

digging up the entire root sys-

transplanting late winter and

tem. When separating clumps,

spring seedings.

add humus to the new planting

area, spread roots out, and wa-

Prune and cut back perennials,

ter well for smooth transplanting.

ornamental grasses, and laven-

best when they’re planted from


flowering this coming summer.

any suckers off trunks as they

on spring seedlings by watering

maturing branches and flowers.

a natural antifungal. Steep 1

Citrus and avocado trees do

late February through May. Rub

appear to focus new growth into

H A RV E S T If you planted fava beans as

cover crop, pull up plants when

half of the blooms have opened for greatest soil benefits, as

Prevent damping-off disease

der for best production and

Pull weeds now, when their

or spritzing with chamomile tea,

roots are small and before they

Tbsp. dried chamomile in 6 cups

weeds have already formed

form flowers or seeds. If any

seedhead, skip the composter to

boiling water and allow to cool

avoid germination (and head-

before using.

Give your hands a moisturizing

treatment as you garden by

aches) in other parts of your garden.



long-lived investment plants, and

don’t get (too) distracted by the latest gardening craze. “If your project feels daunting,” she adds, “break it up into

smaller chunks and tackle them one at a time. Not only will you be rewarded with the satisfaction of completing

multiple mini-projects and making

gradual progress (versus facing multiple half-finished projects), you’ve also built in opportunities to assess what’s working well and what can be improved in the next mini-project.”

VERTICALLY VERSATILE We love to grow up-

ward, but it’s even bet-

ter when using materi-

als that can be deployed for multiple

kinds of plants and throughout changing seasons. Chung’s go-to has been

customizable bamboo stakes that are not only good-looking (and nearly in-

visible once plantings cover them), but also an affordable choice that can be

HOW TO THINK BEYOND THE RAISED BEDS AND TIDY ROWS OF CONVENTIONAL KITCHEN GARDENS. Vancouver, B.C.–based horticulturist Christina Chung, known online as @fluent.

garden, introduces a modern approach to edible gardening that follows nature’s lead by growing plants in mixed communities instead of monocultures. In her

debut book, The Layered Edible Garden: A Beginner’s Guide to Creating a Pro-

ductive Food Garden, Layer by Layer ($29.99, Cool Springs Press), she shares advice on how to think outside of the raised bed and grow a polyculture paradise, filled with layers of edible plants that outcompete weeds, share resources, and

grow beautifully together. As we plan for the busy growing season, Chung shares inspiration on how to tackle your plot with multi-purpose gardening in mind.


of what your eventual goal is, it’s too

As much as we love a

time and money.” As inspiring as

spontaneous seed-

purchasing moment,

successful gardening goes hand in

hand with thoughtful pre-planning. Chung suggests asking yourself

“Why?” before selecting any plants or making to-do lists. Is the purpose of

your garden to harvest high yields of

veggies, a well-manicured space for

easy to fall into traps that cost you

browsing the nursery can be, be careful not to load up on an eclectic mix of new-to-you plants that won’t thrive in the garden. These distractions can

create side projects that could have

been avoided—but we are all guilty of those impulse purchases, so treat yourself kindly.

If the goal is to start that orchard,

hosting friends, or perhaps a backyard

Chung suggests prioritizing the re-

“Without having a clear understanding

ing the site for planting these

orchard full of fruit trees? Chung says,



search of suitable plants and prepar-

used in a number of configurations. They’re also small enough to break

down for easy storage. Recently she’s been adding more metal supports to

the garden as a longer-lasting option that doesn’t degrade from the moisture in wetter climates. She also rec-

ommends thinking of trellising with a

multipurpose function: “Last winter I installed several cattle panel arches in

the front garden, which helped free up valuable soil real estate by allowing

more vigorous space hogs like nastur-

tiums, indeterminate tomatoes, scarlet runner beans, and squashes to grow

upwards. The lush foliage trained off of the ground acted as a necessary

shade-providing layer for bolt-prone greens planted underneath. They’ll

now avoid heat stress during spikes in the temperature.”

GO FOR THE GREENHOUSE Whether you’re an avid seed starter in colder

months or just want to

create a quiet garden getaway, plantfilled conservatories are having a

comeback in landscape design. For

those interested in adding some visual interest to their growing space, but who might be hesitant to commit,

Chung encourages you to envision how the space would be utilized


Designing a Beautiful Edible Garden

For more tips on designing a beautiful edible garden, pick up a copy of The Layered Edible Garden by Christina Chung. $29.99, BARNESANDNOBLE. COM

throughout the year. Would a green-

house unlock exciting shoulder season


Chung resides, she also taps into lo-

activities like early seed starting and

propagation experiments, or provide

Even if you’ve only got

wood sorrel, and wild ginger, which

you and your less cold-hardy plants a

eyes for edible plants,

adding natives into the

sheltered space to stay cozy in the

mix will be beneficial not only to your

investment for you. For those living in

bees are more efficient pollinators

winter? If so, then this may be the right warmer climates, know that the structure might be uninhabitable during

warmer months and you might be us-

ing it for storage or other multi-tasking purposes during that down time.

Chung also advises that before fo-

ecosystem but to your harvests. Native than honeybees, and by supplying

these host plants to other pollinators

and beneficial insects, you’ll be arming yourself with not only pollination support but pest control.

calized natives such as ferns, red-

cover and protect the soil and liven up shady spots. She suggests getting to know the conditions of your

garden by picking native plant pal-

ettes inspired by the wild, untended

areas around you. This will help nar-

row down specific native plants that will thrive in even the trickiest areas of your garden.

For sunny gardens, Chung suggests


as anise hyssop (Agastache foenicu-

that you don’t need

cusing on the style, material, and size

adding North American natives such

Christina believes

first identify the best spot for the struc-

lum), western yarrow (Achillea millefo-

an expansive plot to

of your greenhouse, it’s important to

ture. Where level, sunny locations with easy access to electricity and water

are best for pure practicality, don’t shy

away from placing a greenhouse elsewhere as a standout focal feature to design plantings around.

lium), and lanceleaf coreopsis (Core-

grow a diverse range

opsis lanceolata), which are all

of edibles and advises thinking cre-

water perennials that keep the garden

when planning out your produce.

colorful, low-maintenance, and lowlush and buzzing with beneficial in-

sects even through the drier months. In the Pacific Northwest, where

atively about space and timing

Where carrots might grow straight

and compact, they also have a 60-

plus day wait time until harvest and might not be the best solo use of

garden real estate. Instead, try adding small fruiting shrubs with delicious berries for grazing, underplanted with leafy greens and

culinary herbs that can be harvest-

ed for many months. “The beauty of

growing in layers,” she adds, “is if you should decide to grow those carrots, you can still share the space with longer-lived plants or ones with

shallow root systems as long as cultural conditions are compatible.”

If you’re growing in a single bed,

Chung encourages you to decide on the tallest layer first. A dwarf tree or an upright or vase-shaped shrub

could serve as the canopy layer for

the rest of the planting, consisting of herbaceous perennials and a

ground cover or two draping over

the edge. For patio potted gardens, each “layer” can be grown in separate containers and grouped to-

gether to create a highly flexible and dynamic display.

Most important, she says, go with

like-minded plants that will be happy sharing the same space and

growing conditions, pointing out that’s why Mediterranean plants

such as artichokes, sage, thyme, and rosemary work beautifully together. Don’t overwhelm yourself, select a

few to start, and gradually add different layers to the mix.



The New Minimalist Houseplant Social media feeds continue to be flooded with homes featuring large-scale ex-

Not sure where to start? Here are

Drahn’s plant picks for those new to

botanical styling: Pleomele, Brachychiton rupestris, Dracaena reflexa, Dracaena marginata, Ficus Audrey.

otic plants placed in unexpected, one-of-a-kind vessels. The plants are more ar-

Vivid Vessels

often plucked bare, and pops of personality exploding at the very tips. Some

plants that will work within your space,

“horticultural decor,” but no matter how you label it, the look is undeniably chic.

them in. Drahn focuses on two details

with her L.A. business Plants & Spaces, which is quickly becoming the premiere

can the shape of the pot elevate or

vice on pairing pots with plants and how to keep those vibing vines looking lush.

trailing characteristics? Second, which

chitectural installations than botanical accents, with tall and twisted branches

Once you’ve identified a number of

have referred to this trend as “bonsai adjacent,” while others are quick to call it

it’s time to think about what to put

Zilah Drahn has captured the attention of interior designers and celebrities

when searching for vessels: First, how

home-staging boutique focused on high-end indoor plants. Here she shares ad-

accentuate the plant’s climbing or

colors are complementary to the leaf color or shape? Most important, it

Next, she takes into account the

should be a major statement piece.

that will thrive in the given conditions

are especially important for these

space. Whether you’re looking to fill a

Drahn notes that a number of easy-to-

ate a focal accent on an entry cre-

planters can also create swoon-wor-

success by knowing how the plant will

come into play. If you find an interest-

ing the plant’s growth habits will allow

can often drill one yourself with a ce-

ing the right plant for the perfect spot.

nursery grow pot, which can be re-

A Formula for Foliage

ing the plant inside its original grow

ture are key to achieving this look.

shaped or oversize vessel is a com-

of indoor and outdoor nurseries to ob-

healthier with better drainage. Vessels

growth and leaf variegation before

conditions include very deep pots that

ages you to “look for the craziest

between waterings. Get creative and

mind that choice pruning can also al-

terials other than soil (stacked bricks;

plants in distinct ways.

placing your plant inside.

travel outside of your neighborhood.

Potting Up + Pruning

ture to explore more diverse inventory.

come with individualized soil plans

sale nurseries that have certain days

mits she’s “not a huge fan of the look

plants for you to choose from. Most

rectly in the planter, allowing draining

and patient while taking time to look

to avoid water leakage and a top

thing unusual. Some nurseries might

is dressed with top rocks, be sure to

mens unsellable, so never be afraid to

moisture longer than bare soil. Simi-

Beauty is in the eye of the beholder,

rial up when watering to maintain bal-

growth patterns of particular plants

which vessels you want to showcase in

and how they will grow within the

types of celeb-worthy installations,

large, brightly lit corner or want to cre-

find ceramic, terra-cotta, or chrome

denza, set yourself up for long-term

thy impact when texture and shape

grow and shape over time. Research-

ing piece without drainage holes, you

its mature size to guide you in choos-

ramic bit, or stage your plant inside a

the latest “It” plant, or obsessing over your home, Drahn recommends as-

sessing the space where the installation will live. Her first move is to “con-

sider the room’s aesthetics, including

color and the shapes of other objects, and strive to complement the space without overwhelming.”


moved on watering days. In fact, keep-

Unique branching shape and leaf tex-

pot and hiding it within an oddly

Drahn suggests heading to a number

mon practice that can keep a plant

serve different variations of plant

that might not present ideal growing

making your final choice. She encour-

could take too long to drain or dry out

shape in the branches,” keeping in

fill these oddly-sized vessels with ma-

ter the growth and shape of various

an overturned plastic pot) before

When sourcing plants, be willing to


Where handmade or vintage pieces

Before rushing to the nursery to score

Drahn suggests making it an adven-

At Plants & Spaces, interior installs

She even suggests researching whole-

and ongoing care services. Drahn ad-

for retail clients and potentially more

of saucers,” so she tends to stage di-

important, she suggests being curious

to occur safely inside by using a lining

behind all the other plants for some-

dressing to hide grow pots. If the piece

consider these oddly shaped speci-

monitor your watering as they hold in

ask what might be hiding in the back.

larly, if any moss is used, lift the mate-

after all.

anced moisture relief, as it will get too


Right Plant, Right Place

On Pairing Plants and Pots Love the look but only have a small space? Drahn shares four of her favorite Western designers—whose handmade ceramics add architectural flair to any tabletop—plus a unique plant pairing to pull off the trend with petite placement. 1. POT SHAPE: Cylinder PLANT PAIRING: Pleomele PLANTER: Bumpy Planter + Feet from Klei Ceramics,



Drahn recommends a plant profile similar to a Pleomele—tall and skinny, which mimics the cylindrical shape of the coil vase.

2. POT SHAPE: Round PLANT PAIRING: Kalanchoe Schizophylla Painted Pony Ikebana PLANTER: Peaches Studio,


The smooth orb shape would contrast nicely with the intricate fernlike appearance of a rare Kalanchoe Schizophylla.

3. POT SHAPE: Abstract PLANT PAIRING: Adenia Glauca PLANTER: Umlaut Ceramics,


The bottleneck trunk and climbing leaves of a Adenia Glauca would play off the wave details on this Umlaut planter.





4. POT SHAPE: Shallow Saucer PLANT PAIRING: Pelargonium Cotyledons PLANTER: Tiny caudex planter, Mipa’s Pots and Plants,

$35, A sparsely branched succulent such as Pelargonium Cotyledons would give a more bonsaiforward look when paired with a shallow saucer shape.

soggy or dry out over time.

Outside of the initial styling, where

the shape of the plant is accentuated

by pruning back extra branches or re-

moving sections of leaves, ongoing maintenance is limited to a minor

pruning during spring or summer. Similar to our outdoor plant friends, indoor plants also go dormant in the winter months and do best when clipped during active growth cycles.



Working From Haute Home



Photographs by TH O MAS J. STO RY


Before it was entirely reimagined, this underutilized poolside wing of a traditional L.A. home had good bones, little in the way of light, and one too many walls. The idea was to transform this formerly dark warren into an inviting multipurpose space. The principles applied during the renovation were tried and true: Increase the volume of the space and let in as much natural light as possible. So a wall was removed, natural wood surfaces were simply and lightly stained, and abundant sky lights were added. For full multifunctional impact, floor-toceiling folding doors from LaCantina were installed on two sides. The result is a luminous light box of sorts for conversation, collaboration, and casual entertaining by the pool.



With rolling hardware and robust panel-andframe designs, LaCantina’s folding door systems provide smooth and effortless operation and have the ability to span any size opening. With clean, minimalist lines and clad in aluminum in a subdued and handsome bronze anodized finish, the doors meld seamlessly with the low-slung structure.


Sleek hardware, such as this Siena handle in bronze, allows for effortless unlocking of the doors and a solid grip for sliding them open.


With aluminum on the outside and the warmth of wood on the inside, LaCantina’s Contemporary Clad line offers durability, thermal efficiency, and aesthetic versatility. Here the vertical-grain Douglas fir wood serves as a neutral backdrop that both allows the room’s curated collection of vintage furniture and objets d’art to stand out and serves as a more organic and natural framing for the landscaping and pool outside.





Sponsors as of November 30, 2023. Photo by Monica Orozco.

Palm Springs, California

February 15-25

Tickets at Architecture Tours by Modernism Week October through May Major


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Civic Presenting


11/30/23 9:56 AM 12/18/23 1:04 PM

Unbox the West


The Sunset Subscription Box delivers the Best of the West straight to your door! Every three months, you’ll get a box full of home, design, food, and garden products curated by Sunset editors. Our next box is themed around the holidays: think tasty seasonal treats and gifts from the West and beyond. Our next box will be themed around garden and wellness. Expect garden gear and products for stylish self care to help you make the most of the spring season.

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Some of the goodies from past boxes.

12/18/23 12/18/23 4:02 3:10 PM

FOOD & DRINK Wine by Design

Modernist California architecture, forwardlooking wine, and neo-California cuisine converge at a pool party at the Hollywood outpost of the couple behind Ashes & Diamonds winery. Photographs by TH O MAS J. STO RY



Classic at the LA Pool House” pickup parties, during which Los Angeles members of their wine club come to get their allotment of crémants, single-vineyard Cabernets, zero-zero Chardonnays, and other wines crafted by some of the top makers in the business. When Ashes & Diamonds opened in Napa in 2017, it stood out in several ways, most notably the design of its winery, a collection of buildings with zigzag rooflines, portholes, and a cantilevered neo-modernist structure, all designed by Bestor Architecture in a way that evokes Bauhaus and Neutra instead of Tuscan villas and French châteaux. It was modernist rebuke to modern farmhouse. There was a swank lounge with low-slung seating for members, a zine with writings on punk rock and architecture, and a groovy soundtrack of hip-hop, downtempo groove, and jazz, all passions of Kashy’s, who got his start in the music business working with artists such as the Beastie Boys. This was before Napa Valley figured out that

a late winter day in Los Angeles. The kind that makes people want to move to Los Angeles: It’s, yes, sunny and 72, palm trees sway against a clear blue sky, beach balls float in the pool, Charles Mingus plays on the hi-fi, and people sit on Eames sofas and sip chilled rosé while nibbling on a vivid super herby frittata and pillowy focaccia in a mid-century modern pool house designed by Pierre Koenig. A deer silently makes its way along the edge of the property. This is the Hollywood Hills home of Kashy and Laura Khaledi, owners of Ashes & Diamonds, a winery known for its excellent bottlings and modernist take on the Napa Valley experience. Today is one of their annual “A&D



people wanted experiences along with their tasting flights. Today membership at Ashes & Diamonds has evolved into what might be just one of the best buys in wine country: Not only does the baseline membership get you early access to exclusive bottlings, it also includes concierge access to some of the best hotel pools in the area, and multi-course wine lunches that have become a favorite among locals who treat the winery as a sort of vinous Soho House. Today in the Hollywood Hills, the winery’s chefs, Ethan Speizer and Madison Gabor, have come down from Napa Valley to cook for members. On the menu: a freewheeling California mashup with that herby frittata, a nod to Kashy’s Iranian heritage; a fancy take on chips and dip, with smoked trout roe and charred onions (a toasty briny pairing for bubbly); that pillowy focaccia; and other tasty things that just go well with wine. Join us on this beautiful day as we savor the convergence of good design and good wine.


Opposite: Laura and Kashy Khaledi in their Pierre Koenig pool house; wine and snacks by the pool. This page: The Khaledis’ living room is filled with a mix of period-correct furniture and other modernist pieces like the Vala swivel recliners from Design Within Reach, accented with Tom Dixon pillows.


The Khaledis’ L.A. home is

the ideal backdrop for inti-

mate tastings and Ashes & Diamonds events for a

number of reasons. Off the bat, it’s an intimate, social setting where Kashy and

Laura can host wine lovers in a relaxed way. It translates the fresh, modern

­a nti-corporate energy they’re bringing to the

Napa wine scene. And the stunning house, designed

by Gregory Ain, along with the bonus Pierre Koenig

pool house, represent the

Khaledis’ devotion to mid-

lawyer who represented

some drywall when they

spectrum, from furniture to

Hollywood), they knew

the design and layout re-

century style across the home design to wine making.

“Ashes & Diamonds has

been having a conversa-

tion with the mid-century

era since its inception, dating back to the first wine we made in 2014,” says

Kashy. “There was an ele-

blacklisted writers in

they’d found their new

home. Ain studied with

Eames. He worked for the

lieved to be the last Pierre

protégé of Charles and Ray legendary couple as their chief engineer during World War II.

“Ain is a kind of an un-

wines from that era. They

he wasn’t popular for his

practices of picking raisins, adding tartaric acid and

other additives that have become common.”

Everything the Khaledis

The second structure on

the property also has a

sung hero of that era,” says

didn’t use the common

main untouched.

Richard Neutra, and was a

gance, refinement, and

minimalism that came with

purchased the home, but

Khaledi. “We learned that

views on communal living,

so that tarnished his repu-

tation and didn’t allow him to come up with his peers like Lautner or Neutra.”

The home, which is fur-

distinct pedigree. It’s be-

Koenig–designed building to be completed in the

1990s, before the case-

study architect and USC

professor passed away in

2004. With its large metalframed windows, sharp

angles, and rectangular

canvas-shade awnings in

primary colors, it’s a stun-

ning and simple setting for their wine gatherings.

“We say come to our

do pushes against what he

nished with finds from

place in Hollywood where

era” of modern wine. So in

ish Modern, bears all of the

losophies around design

likes to call the “McMansion August 2020, when their

real estate agent showed them this largely un-

touched architectural gem (commissioned by Ben Margolis, a prominent

Modernica, DWR, and Dan-

hallmarks of that architectural heyday: boxy rooms, right angles, clerestory

windows, and an honest

simplicity. They replaced

the marmoleum floors and

we can talk about the phiand architecture, and how

it relates to the era of wines that we champion,” Kashy says. “It’s just a continua-

tion of the dialogue around mid-century culture.”



A&D Sourdough Focaccia “Six years into serving food at Ashes & Diamonds, we’re finding that we’re

equally known for our focaccia as our stunning wines,” says chef Ethan

Speizer. “Originally developed as a

recipe for a sourdough boule, we transitioned this recipe to focaccia,

drenched in the best local olive oil and generously topped with flaky sea salt. It’s perfect with our wines.” M A K ES 2 F O CAC C I A

3½ cups all-purpose flour 2 Tbsp. whole wheat flour 1½ Tbsp. salt ½ tsp. yeast

1¾ cups plus 1 Tbsp. filtered water ½ cup active sourdough starter Olive oil for baking

1. In a large bowl, mix flours, salt, and

yeast lightly with a whisk to combine.

2. Add the water and sourdough starter, and hand mix to combine all ingredients, pinching the dough with

your thumb and index finger as you

mix. This will help create a homogeneous dough.

3. Cover the bowl with a towel or plastic wrap and let rest 30 minutes to

allow for the dough to fully hydrate.

4. Uncover and stretch the dough, grabbing one corner at a time,

stretching the dough vertically until resistance is met. Be careful not to tear the dough here. Fold the

stretched corner to the opposite

corner, then repeat with all four cor-

ners. Let rest 15 minutes, then repeat this 3 more times (every 15 minutes),

for a total of 4 stretch-and-folds over an hour.

5. Place in a lidded container with

plenty of headspace for the dough

to expand. The dough will double in size! Place in the refrigerator to ferment overnight.

6. The next day, preheat oven to 450°F. 7. Generously oil the bottom of an

8-inch cast-iron pan with high-quality olive oil. Grab a large handful of



the dough (about 22 oz.), and place

into the pan. Brush the top with more olive oil and set in a warm place to proof for 45 minutes.

8. After 45 minutes of proofing, gently

press into the dough with the tips of your fingers, creating dimples and

stretching the dough to the sides of the pan. Set back in a warm place

for 30 more minutes of proofing.

9. Generously sprinkle the top with flaky sea salt and bake about 20 minutes, until dark golden brown.

10. Remove from the oven and, using a

metal spatula, place onto a wire rack to rest for 1 hour.

11. Slice, and serve with cultured butter and sea salt.

Charred Onion Labneh with Smoked Trout Roe “A casual caviar setup giving sour-

Zest of 1 lemon

labneh in harmony with high-quality

¼ cup minced chives

cream-and-onion vibes, utilizing tangy crème fraîche and charred spring onions. There’s truly nothing better than

chips and dip with a little dollop of roe or caviar. It’s an indulgent poolside snack.”

M A K ES 1 ½ C U P S 2 spring onions or 4 scallions 1 tsp. olive oil

TK tsp. sea salt

1 cup crème fraîche

¼ cup labneh

1 oz. smoked trout roe, or any other roe Salt and vinegar chips

2. In a stand mixer with a whisk

attachment (or using a hand-held electric mixer), combine 1 tsp. salt, crème fraîche, and lemon zest.

Mix on medium speed until stiff peaks form.

1. Toss your spring onions in olive oil

3. Transfer mixture to a medium bowl.

over charcoal) over very high heat

the labneh, charred spring onions,

and sea salt, and grill (preferably

until charred. Let cool, then mince

With a rubber spatula, gently fold in and half the chives.

with a sharp knife. You can also char

4. Spoon mixture into a serving

high heat, rotating with tongs fre-

and roe. Serve with salt and

the onions in a cast-iron skillet, over quently until charred and tender.

bowl and top with remaining chives vinegar chips.



Brightly colored Sunbrella shades playfully pivot to protect the Pierre Koenig–designed poolhouse from the bright afternoon sun.



Endive with Beet Vinaigrette and Salsa Hungara “In our world, a salad should be all things savory, sweet, crunchy, and

salty. This salad absolutely fits that bill, with an earthy and acid-forward beet

vinaigrette and a Hungarian version of the traditional Mexican salsa macha of sorts, which we dubbed ‘Salsa Hungara.’ “

S E R V ES 4 – 6 BEET VINAIGRETTE 2 small red beets

1½ oranges, juiced and zested ½ Tbsp. Dijon mustard 1 cup neutral oil

½ cup apple cider vinegar 1 Tbsp. salt

1 tsp. sugar (optional) •

Wrap beets in foil and roast at 400°F for 1 hour, or until tender. Let cool, then peel and slice into 1-inch chunks. In a Vitamix or other

powerful blender, combine beets

and all other ingredients. Blend until smooth. Season with additional salt and sugar if needed. SALAD

4 apples, sliced

Leaves of 4 white or red Belgian endive Salt

2 Tbsp. Beet Vinaigrette, or more to taste

2 Tbsp. Salsa Hungara (recipe at right)

1. In a large metal bowl, combine ap-

ple slices and endive leaves. Season with a pinch of salt and add 2 Tbsp. beet vinaigrette. Gently toss with

your hands to sufficiently coat all

leaves. Taste and season with salt or more vinaigrette if needed.

2. Transfer to a large serving bowl and drizzle with Salsa Hungara.

Salsa Hungara “This will keep in the refrigerator for up to 1 month if it remains covered in oil. Great for any other application that would call for a chili crisp. It’s incredible on potatoes or grilled meats.”


2 cups neutral oil 16 cloves garlic, minced 4 shallots, minced 1 Tbsp. smoked paprika 1 tsp. caraway seed

2 guajillo chile, stem and seeds removed 1 cup hazelnuts, roughly chopped 1 Tbsp. kosher salt 1 tsp. sugar 1.

In a medium saucepan, combine oil and garlic and heat over medium. Stir occasionally, frying the garlic until light golden brown. Set a strainer over a large bowl, and carefully pour garlic and oil through it, reserving the hot oil for the next step. Remove the garlic from the

strainer and place in a bowl. Add oil back to the saucepan and repeat the same process using the shallots. Reserve in the bowl with the garlic. 2. Drain oil once again, and add back to the saucepan, this time frying the hazelnuts over medium until golden brown. After 2 minutes of frying the nuts, add the guajillo chiles. 3. Once again strain the nuts and guajillo, adding the oil back to the


5. 6.


saucepan set over medium heat. Reserve the nuts and guajillo with the shallots and garlic. While the oil is heating back up, combine paprika, caraway, salt, and sugar in a metal bowl. Pour the hot oil over the spice mix and set aside to cool. Once the mixture has cooled, stir in the hazelnuts, garlic, and shallots. Season to taste with additional salt and sugar if necessary.



2. Heat 1 tbsp of olive oil in an 8-inch

Kookoo Sabzi

non-stick pan over medium heat.

A herb-laden frittata of sorts, living

somewhere between a traditional Persian kookoo sabzi, and a Spanish tortilla espanola. We serve it with a

punchy saffron rouille thickened with

leftover sourdough focaccia. With this recipe your weekend brunch will level up a few notches.

4 garlic cloves, minced or thinly sliced 1 bunch dill, minced

1 bunch chives, minced

degrees, or until tender. Once

cooled, pell the skin of the potato

and crumble into bite-size pieces.

from jar

1 Tbsp. Dijon mustard

½ tsp. smoked paprika


5. Pour your egg mixture into the pan,

and cook for 4-5 minutes, or until the bottom is set and beginning to

15 minutes, or until fully set and no

wrapped in foil, for 45 minutes at 400

2 cloves garlic

turmeric, and salt. Stir using a whisk

oven and cook for an additional 10-

1. Bake potato on a sheet tray,

2 roasted red peppers

& garlic, potato, herbs, fenugreek,

brown. Transfer to your 400 degree

2 tsp. salt

1 egg yolk

a bowl to cool.

3. In a large bowl, combine eggs, leeks

the pan.

2 ½ cups cilantro, minced

tsp saffron

move from pan onto a sheet tray or

to generously cover the bottom of

5 cups parsley, minced


matic and just starting to brown. Re-

medium heat, with enough olive oil

6 eggs, beaten

2 Tbsp. white wine vin

spatula or wooden spoon, until aro-

4. Heat your 8 inch non-stick skillet over

1 medium-sized russet potato


ring occasionally with a rubber

to mix well.

S E R V ES 4 - 6


Add leeks and garlic and saute, stir-

longer jiggly.

6. Carefully invert the kookoo onto a

large plate or cutting board. Cool

for 1 hour, then slice and serve with a dollop of rouille.

½ cup leftover bread, cubed

¾ tsp. Salt 1. Combine saffron and white wine vinegar. Steep for 30 minutes to draw out the flavor and color of the saffron.


2. In a jar wide enough to fit an immersion blender, combine the vinegar & saffron mixture along with all other ingredients. Blend until fully combined. 3. Season to taste with more salt or vinegar if needed.

Opposite: The Ashes & Diamonds team toasts. This page: Yearbook, the Ashes & Diamonds ‘zine, sits on a Jasper Morrison side table.






Santa Monica’s Crudo e Nudo is our kind of seaside vibe: a sustainable seafood restaurant that serves a menu of exclusively local fish and zippy wines, all in a dressed-down setting that’s big on fun and big on heart. Story by H U G H GARVE Y Photographs by TH O MAS J. STO RY



At around 11 every day in

Santa Monica,

the restaurants lining Main Street just two blocks from the beach start setting up for lunch: The patios built in the pandemic are swept, tables put out, and the kitchens go into high gear. At Crudo e Nudo, the tiny kitchen is comparatively quiet: pristine local fish that have been hanging on hooks in a custom refrigerator are broken down in a space as quiet as a high-end sushi bar. The fish is sliced at a counter just three feet wide, where it’s garnished with a splash a delicate sauce, sprinkled with a punchy spice mix, topped with strands of seaweed or local produce, and the new best version of California coastal cuisine is plated to be enjoyed by surfers coming in from their morning sessions, in-the-know locals, and travelers who’ve gotten wind of this gem by the sea. Chef Brian Bornemann has come up with the perfect metaphor for this restaurant he co-owns with partner



Leena Culhane: The restaurants he’s run in the past (the iconic Michael’s, the innovative Tasting Kitchen) are yachts with big prices and big ambitions. Crudo e Nudo is a dinghy. And in the few years it’s been open, it’s proven itself to be an exceptionally seaworthy one. It has been steadily and increasingly profitable, it’s a famously excellent place to work (several marriages have come out of its workforce), and it continues to become more refined as a dining experience (gone are the counter-only service and compostable plates; candles and waiters in the evening and a bigger wine list and menu have arrived). It’s a “less turns into more” model that is sustainable in more ways than one. Not only are those low-labor, high-flavor dishes high-profit-margin, they also are truly local. No fish on the menu is ever from anywhere but Southern California. Crudo e Nudo has spawned a sister restaurant up the street, Isla, which applies the same model to wood-fired food. When it’s in full swing, Crudo e Nudo is a vibe, thanks in no small part to the efforts of co-owner Culhane, who runs the front of the house and serves as the restaurant’s creative director. The decor is a true Santa Monica surf shack, with shelves lined with seashells, mermaid art, and cans of tinned fish. It doesn’t channel another location, as many restaurants tend to: no reference to the Italian coast or other dreamy places far away. As those surfers, locals, and tourists settle in, chilled natty wine is splashed into low glasses, Boy Genius plays on the sound system, and the plates of artfully assembled seafood come out, and diners tuck in at tables set up on the streetside patio in the sun. Halibut is elevated by the fruity umami combination of white miso and good olive oil, striped bass is punched up with spicy za’atar. A farmers’ market plate is punched up with seedy dukkah and black garlic hummus. And it must be pointed out that the vegetables come from the legendary Santa Monica farmers’ market. On the following pages we’ve got these delicious dishes and more. The trick to these recipes is sourcing impeccable seafood and dialing in your technique. The result is our kind of health food: It sustains the planet, and it sustains the soul.

“Santa Monica’s Crudo e Nudo is a vibe. The decor is true California surf shack.” WELLNESS 2024 • SUNSET




Californian or Pacific Halibut is a

special species. While East Coast and Alaskan halibut are great cooked, they are terrible as

sashimi, but our local variety is a wonder when fresh and sliced.

Ask your fishmonger for halibut

from the Channel Islands, or try

the fish markets in Ventura, Santa Barbara, or elsewhere up the

coast. (Some of the best we have had was caught under the Golden Gate Bridge by our friend Bailey!) Ask them to loin the halibut

and give you the bones from the

same fish, or do it yourself with a sharp knife. White soy sauce has

all the flavor of soy sauce without the dark color and is available in specialty food stores and online. You can also use shirodashi,

which is white soy combined with dashi. This recipe will serve two

as an appetizer or one person as a main course, but we recom-

mend making at least two cru-

dos from this menu and sharing. S E R V ES 2 A S A N A P P E T I Z E R

1 small Pacific halibut or other

lean, white sushi-grade fish, boned, skinned, and cut into loins, bones reserved

1 tsp. white soy or shirodashi

2 sheets dried kombu or local seaweed

1 pinch toasted white sesame seeds

1 pinch kosher salt

1 pinch Maldon salt

1 Tbsp. Omed brand olive oil or

good quality arbequina olive oil

¼ cup green onions, thinly sliced crosswise, then shocked in ice water

1. Place halibut bones in a medium saucepan and add just

enough water to cover. Simmer on low heat 20–25 minutes.

2. Rinse the kombu and set in a large pot or heat-resistant

container. Place a strainer or sieve over the top of the



container. Once the fish-bone

slices perpendicular to the

strainer directly onto the kom-

The lines that you see are the

stock is ready, pour it over the bu. Cover with a lid or plastic

wrap and let steep 15 minutes. Strain the resulting dashi through a fine strainer or

cheesecloth into a large bowl.

Cool the dashi and season with a combination of white soy

sauce and kosher salt until it tastes good to you.

3. Using a very sharp knife, preferably a slicing knife, make long

grain of the muscles in the fish. direction of the grain—you are slicing across them not with them. Make long, careful

strokes using the whole length of the blade, by pulling back

with your elbow and letting the knife do the work, do not push down with the knife or “chop”

the fish. Slices should be as thin as you can get, about 2 milli-

meters for a firm-fleshed fish.

Depending on the size of the

loin, you are looking for 6 to 9 slices or 3 ounces.

4. Lay the slices of fish on a

rimmed plate. Pinch a few flakes of Maldon salt from high over

the fish, then top with the seasoned dashi. Splash a healthy

glug of arbequina olive oil, and

top with the toasted white sesame and sliced green onion.

Gently shake the plate to lightly

mix the dashi and oil, and serve with warm bread.

Abalone Sashimi


For sustainability’s sake, never

eat wild abalone from the West

Coast. Cultured Abalone in Santa Barbara cultivates exceptional farmed abalone.


2 medium farmed abalone 2 cups rosé

Strained juice of 2 halved and grilled lemons

1 tsp. colatura di alici 1 tsp. Thai fish sauce

1 pinch fennel pollen

3 Tbsp. Picual or other peppery olive oil

1. In a pot fitted with a steamer

basket, steam abalone over rosé with the lid on for 12 minutes. Pull the abalone and immediately submerge in an ice bath.

2. Whisk together the lemon juice,

colatura, fish sauce, fennel pollen, and olive oil.

3. Remove the abalone from their

shells and discard the liver. Cut off the “shell” that extends from the bottom of the abalone to

the shell like a pedastal. Slice this as thinly as you can, and

place back in the bottom of the shell to cover the holes in the abalone shell.

4. With the bottom side up, score the abalone about a

centimeter deep in a cross-

hatch pattern. This makes this tougher side more tender. Flip the abalone so that the “top”/ brown side of the abalone is

now facing up. Using a sharp

and thin knife held at a 45-de-

gree angle, make as many thin slices as you can.

5. Place the sliced abalone in the

shells and dress with the vinaigrette. Garnish with more fennel pollen and serve.



Striped Bass Crudo


spice blend za’atar, which you can readily purchase online. But for the

1 Tbsp. black

Firm-fleshed striped bass can stand up to the punchy Middle Eastern

full-on Crudo e Nudo effect, mix up a batch of your own za’atar, which gets extra sweetness from fennel pollen and smoky Piment d’Ville pepper from Mendocino, California’s Booneville Barn Collective. S E R V ES 2 A S A N A P P E T I Z E R 1 teaspoon Crudo Za’atar,

available online or via recipe at right

1 Tbsp. Omed smoked olive oil (or substitute smoked Maldon salt and a good picual olive oil)

1 loin Pacifico Aquaculture striped bass, Kurodai, or mackerel

1 large pinch Maldon salt

4 cilantro leaves, or onion flowers when in season

1. Using a very sharp knife,

preferably a slicing knife, make

long slices perpendicular to the grain of the muscles in the fish. The lines that you see are the

direction of the grain—you are slicing across them not with



1 Tbsp. sumac sesame seeds, toasted

1 Tbsp. white

sesame seeds, toasted

them. Make long, careful strokes

1 tsp. fennel

blade, by pulling back with your

1 tsp. Piment

using the whole length of the

elbow and letting the knife do the work, do not push with the knife or “chop” the fish. Slices should

be as thin as you can get, about 2 millimeters for a firm fleshed

fish. Depending on the size of the

loin, you are looking for 6–9 slices or 3 ounces.

2. Place 1 Tbsp. za’atar on the plate next to the sliced fish, and pour


d’Ville brand piment


Aleppo chili, or ½ tsp. finely

ground chilies

1 tsp. good-

quality dried

Mediterranean oregano

a glug of smoked olive oil over

¼ tsp. fresh

crushing the Maldon salt

¼ tsp. kosher

the fish and the za’atar. Finish by between your fingers directly

over the fish. Top with cilantro

flowers. Serve with warm bread.

thyme salt

Market Mezze

This dish always features quality olives and a variety of market veg-

gies that are either pickled, fermented, or raw, served with our black-

garlic hummus and pistachio dukkah. There are no real rules here! Buy cute veggies and cut them into beautiful bite-size pieces that retain the shape of the vegetable yet are small enough to eat with chopsticks (all food at Crudo e Nudo is served with chopsticks).


2 15 oz. cans chickpeas, drained and rinsed

16 cloves black garlic 1 Tbsp. tahini

2 Tbsp. canola oil 2 Tbsp. olive oil

2 tsp. kosher salt, plus more to taste

Juice of 3 lemons

1. In a steamer basket, steam

chickpeas over very little water until totally soft.

2. Add chickpeas and black garlic to a food processor. Pulse to break apart chickpeas and

garlic. Turn on the food processor and add in tahini. Stream in oils until texture is light and

fluffy. Add in a big pinch of ko-


1 Tbsp. coriander seeds 1 tsp. fennel

½ tsp. cumin seeds 1


cup Santa Barbara pistachios

½ tsp. fennel pollen 1 pinch kosher salt

1. In a pan over low heat, toast

coriander, fennel, and cumin

until just aromatic—do not let them burn. Blitz in a spice

blender or crush in a mortar and pestle. Chop the pista-

chios finely with a knife or in a food processor, then put in a

fine strainer to shake out any dust. Combine the chopped

pieces with the ground spices and a small pinch of kosher salt with the fennel pollen.

sher salt. Add in half the lemon

2. Spread the black garlic hum-

seasoning and add more salt

then lay out the raw, pickled,

juice little by little. Taste for

or lemon juice to balance the

flavor to your liking. Do not add all juice or salt unless needed.

The flavor should be garlic-forward with a hint of lemon.

mus on one third of the plate, and fermented vegetables,

keeping like with like and ev-

erything pointing outward in

the same direction. Top with a healthy glug of Picual or other

peppery olive oil, crush Maldon salt directly over the raw veg-

gies with your fingers, and then top everything with the pistachio dukkah. Have fun with it!

“The recipes are our kind of health food: It sustains the planet and the soul.” WELLNESS 2024 • SUNSET


Clams +

Fresh Tomato

While this dish is exceptional

when using peak season tomatoes, which need virtually no

cooking to maximize their inherently deep and balanced flavor,

you may need to boost the flavor of off-season tomatoes with extra salt or a hit of sherry vinegar or lemon.


8 fresh cayenne, Fresno, or Thai chilies

2 cups Champagne vinegar 1 cup sugar Kosher salt

1 cup fregola or Israeli couscous 1/3 cup olive oil, plus more for tossing with fregola

1 fennel bulb, cut into very small dice

1 large yellow onion, cut into very small dice

3 cloves garlic, thinly sliced

6–8 large ripe red tomatoes

1½ lbs. Venus clams or similar large clams

1 cup fumet, fresh fish stock, or good quality clam broth

2 bay leaves

1 bunch fresh Italian or thai basil Fresh fennel flowers or fronds

1. Slice fresh chilies into thin rings and place in a 1-quart jar or heatproof container. Bring

champagne vinegar, sugar,

and 2 cups water to a simmer

in a small sauce pot, then pour over the sliced chilies. Add a

large pinch of salt and allow to



cool to room temperature.

Store overnight in the fridge.

2. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add fregola or Israeli couscous, and boil for 10

minutes (or follow directions on the package). When cooked al dente, drain and toss in a mixing bowl with olive oil. Lay out on a cookie sheet to cool.

3. Heat 1/3 cup olive oil over low heat in a large, heavy-bot-

tomed pot with a lid. Add fennel, onion, and a pinch of ko-

sher salt. Once the fennel and

onion are tender, add garlic to

the soffritto, cooking until it becomes aromatic. You want to encourage the sweetness of

the vegetables by not allowing them to develop any color, so take care not to overcook.

4. Using the large-holed side of a box grater, grate the tomatoes over a bowl until all the flesh

comes out. The skin and stem should be left behind in your

hand. (You can discard them, or if you’re ambitious, dehydrate for tomato powder.)

Once all the tomatoes are

grated, add the pulp to the soffritto. Cook the tomato pulp in

the soffritto 15–20 minutes over medium-low heat.

5. Add the clams, fregola, and a

splash of fish stock. Cover and cook until the clams are fully open, depending on the size about 6 minutes. Taste, and

add more salt, fish stock, or olive oil as desired. Top with a generous amount of basil.

Spoon the clams into a bowl

and pour the remaining sauce over the top. Garnish with the

pickled chilies, more basil, and fennel fronds flowers. Serve

with warm bread and a cold, minerally white wine.

Perfect Pairings We selected the ideal bottles to serve with this menu, and it’s available to members of our wine club. Sign up for quarterly deliveries of the best wines in the West at

> 2022 Adelia Pinot Grigio Yakima Valley Washington

This wine has loads of citrus and florals and a chamomile note that brings out the fennel in the abalone recipe.

< 2022 Metier by DeLille Cellars Sauvignon Blanc Columbia Valley The buttery halibut is perfectly cut by this crisp wine with herbal flavors.

> 2021 Le Vigne Chardonnay Paso Robles The depth and ripe fruit in this wine stand up to the complexity of the clams, while the touch of salinity in the wine mirrors the seafood flavors.

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T R AV E L & E S C A P E S The Dude Ranch, Reimagined A new generation of ranchers are offering guests a transformative taste of the West at Reid Creek Lodge. Story by KRI STA S I M M O N S Photographs by TH O MAS J. STO RY



Sagebrush crushes under my horse’s hooves, wafting a sharp sweetness into the Wyoming air. Towering exfoliated granite, dotted with ponderosa pine, makes way for an expansive azure sky as we ride through Elysian Fields of wild lupine and Indian paintbrush. Meadowlarks sing, and aspens quake in the afternoon breeze. It’s an impossibly beautiful landscape fit for a Clint Eastwood film. A sudden clap of thunder smacks, like clockwork, signaling the arrival of evening in the Laramie Mountains. It’s time to head back to the barn for supper. The storm chases us as we canter along the frontier, and it’s hard not to feel like a poster of an old rodeo. As we make our way to home base at Reid Creek Lodge, on Wagonhound ranch, I’m grinning ear to ear from the childlike thrill of learning something new. The day prior we’d spent the day in the property’s world-class equestrian arena, learning skills from loping to roping. Today is the first time I’ve cantered since I was a little girl at Western horse camp, and the feeling of freedom and connection with my horse, Hollywood, transports me to the carefree presence of childhood. The ranch’s American Quarter Horses are impressively responsive; the well-loved steeds get us back to home base with just enough time to dismount before supper. This is where the reminiscence of the Old West ends, and a new experience of modern luxury begins. Instead of a cowboy’s meal of baked beans, we’re greeted with glasses of funky orange wine from the Caucasus Mountains in Georgia and homemade spanakopita to tide us over before our dinner of grilled steaks, which come from Wagonhound’s natural Red Angus ranching operation. To finish, a selection of handmade pastries and sorbets. Housed on the 300,000 acres of Wagonhound Land & Livestock, Reid Creek Lodge distinguishes itself from a traditional dude ranch in that it’s a guest operation on a commercial cattle ranch. Which is part of the reason the horses are so well-trained; they’re the same herd working the land with the cowboys, rather than simply being taken out for guided trail rides with guests. In our fast-paced world, there are very few places where time has stood still, but the land where Wagonhound ranches their 5,000 head of cattle feels like a piece of the American West preserved. Here, the terms “rebrand” and “AI” take on a whole new meaning. (The first refers to the season when cattle are marked; the latter the way ranchers selectively breed their herd. We’re not in California anymore, kids.) There’s a welcome sense of slowness and connection to a bygone era that, despite the quickly changing taste in tourism trends, remains mostly the same.



From top left: A herd of longhorn cattle; a wrangler on the ranch wears custom leather chaps; house smoked bacon and pancakes are served at breakfast; the great room boasts Western decor and views of Wyoming.

Though cowboys certainly have had a resurgence in fashion and popular culture thanks to the success of shows like Yellowstone, there’s always been a fascination with the American West. The idea of a dude ranch started in the Dakotas in the 1880s, when wealthy Europeans and folks from the Eastern United States would come out and pay a pretty penny to experience the romance of cowboy life on the open frontier. Located on a portion of the Oregon Trail outside Douglas, Wyoming, Reid Creek opened its guest lodge on the historic property in 2022. The operation is owned by Art and Catherine Nicholas, and overseen by Andrea Nicholas Perdue, the CEO of Wagonhound Holdings. Because the accommodations are built inside a single lodge rather than separate cabins, it’s the perfect place for a multi-generational family trip. “I feel really passionate about that innate connection between humanity and nature. Having young kids myself, I really see the need for people to be outside, to be in the moment, to experience dirt on their hands, and the wind in their face. It does something to your soul,” says Nicholas Perdue, who brought the idea of adding the lodge and guest experience to Wagonhound. “It allows us the ability to really slow down and appreciate the largest shared resource that we have, which is the land on which we live, and make conscious choices that are good for you, for me, and for the next generation.” Each day on the ranch opens up a new element of discovery, picking up new skills with a childlike enthusiasm



“In our fast-paced world, there are very few places where time has stood still, but the land where Wagonhound ranches their 5,000 head of cattle feels like a piece of the American West preserved.”

and a lack of self-judgment. On our trip, I witness a retired senior giggle with delight as he learns to rope on horseback, skeet shoot, and confidently ride on horseback—a side of him his equestrian wife of over 30 years has never seen. Each day offers a fresh perspective, starting off with a wildlife safari looking out for the Reid Creek Big Five— mountain lion, pronghorn, white tail deer, mule deer, and elk—as we head to our chosen activities, all of which are inclusive and can be done on your own timeline. Think skeet shooting, horseback riding, roping, wildlife viewing, rock climbing, and more, all with private, in-house guides. There truly is something for every level of adventurer, from tame to Bear Grylls, whose crew filmed at the ranch just a few weeks before our visit. “Maintaining that connection to



the past is critical,” says Nicholas Perdue. “When people come out and see how natural that connection is—even folks from the city that have never camped a day in their life—it can help reconnect them to the importance of this way of life, and the blood, sweat, and tears it takes to support our food systems.” Owner Art Nicholas is an advocate for preserving those traditions. Reid Creek houses his preeminent collection of Western art from the Traditional Cowboy Arts Association. It’s a veritable museum of impeccably crafted leather saddles, chaps, bits, and braided rawhide ropes—pieces that prove they really don’t make ’em like they used to. There’s even a room dedicated to horse-drawn carriages from around the world, a nod to the fact that Wagonhound is situated on land that the Oregon Trail went through, and how the business got its name; a precarious creek on the property often caused carriage’s wagon hounds, which connected the horses to the wagon, to break. Imagine making it all that way, and then getting stuck in Douglas because of a pothole. Frankly, it’s a beautiful place to stop. As a Californian, I am a bit baffled to find out Wyoming has such a spectacular superbloom. Spring is prime time to visit, particularly







From top left: The property includes a lake for standup paddleboarding and fishing; Indian paintbrush bloom during wildflower season; boating out on the lake; catching trout on a mid-morning outing.


this year, when there was lots of rain that made way for incredible stands of wild irises, sawtooth, poppies, and, most important for the ranchers, lots of grass. The wet winter was a welcome one, as Nicholas Perdue emphasizes that ranching is, at its purest form, farming grass. “You will never find a better land steward than a rancher. When you look at the individuals who are choosing that lifestyle, you do have that next generation that’s coming up, but they’re making the choice for a cognitive reason. It’s a lifestyle choice. There’s even a cowboy code of ethics. They find peace and happiness by waking up every morning and saddling a horse and going out and checking cows.”


That care makes for happy cows, and happy people. Heading to the airport to return home to Los Angeles, we hit our first paved city road in three days, and there’s an immediate sense of longing, not to be home with my dog and my creature comforts, as I typically am at the end of a trip, but for the past. Not just the past 72 hours, but for the old way of life that I was able to step into, if ever so briefly. While it’s true that we tend to idealize these simpler ways of life, it’s hard to deny the draw of the frontier. And there’s something truly comforting to know that even in a world that seems to be changing at an exponentially faster rate, it can still exist in this special corner of the West.



Live each day with courage.


Take pride in your work.


Always finish what you start.


Do what has to be done.


Be tough, but fair.


When you make a promise, keep it.


Ride for the brand.


Talk less and say more.


Remember that some things aren’t for sale.


Know where to draw the line.










Reid Creek’s glamping site is made up of safaristyle tents situated in fields of wildflowers.





Lone Mountain Ranch

New West THESE RECENTLY OPENED RANCH RETREATS OFFER AMENITIES FOR THE NEW GENERATION. There’s a big difference between a dude ranch and a

working cattle ranch, and this new generation of ranches


is bringing a modern touch to a storied Western tradition.




This Colorado agricultural business operates

This petite resort housed inside a restored

Situated on 10,500 acres in California’s Santa

tion to hospitality stays focused on preserving

deos and Western concerts for both guests

wellness retreats, including one offering an

large-scale cattle and bison ranches in addithe legacy of ranching in the American West. They also have a mercantile with expertly

crafted leatherworks. Guests who stay on-site can learn these time-honored crafts like natural dyeing, all of which are geared toward

preserving native grasslands while creating meaningful experiences.

1915 homestead in Big Sky, Montana, hosts roand locals in the northern Rockies. The prop-

erty opened for its first season this year, offering 53 miles of trails, access to Yellowstone National Park, excellent fly fishing, and the

full-service farm-to-table Horn & Cantle restaurant and saloon.

Ynez Valley, this historic ranch hosts regular equine therapy program, where guests ex-

plore the human-horse connection. Guests experience multiple sessions that build on

each other, walking away with new inter- and intrapersonal skills.














he thin alpine air stings my lungs as I vigorously inhale and exhale in kapalabhati pranayama, or breath of fire, hoping to warm my body while focusing on the ice-cold rushing water beyond the frozen banks of the Taylor River. I reluctantly remove my robe and slowly submerge myself in the frigid stream, simultaneously questioning my sanity and attempting to regulate the rush of self-doubt. As a competitive swimmer who spent her career lamenting morning workouts during the winter, I’d have splashed water in your face if you told me I’d be willingly plunging into a frozen river in the name of wellness. But there I am, meditating for three full minutes as the frigid water rushes around me, repeating to myself, “We can do hard things.” My guide today is Caith Norton, wellness program manager at Eleven, an experience-based hotel group headquartered in Crested Butte, Colorado. When I’m at my limit, Norton calls it, and I pull my numb body out of the frigid water and run back to the steaming indoor jacuzzi at the lodge, wade in, and feel the biggest rush of my life. As extreme cold meets extreme hot, I’m bathed in an intense sense of clarity and a fullbody high that no drug could ever provide. And I can’t wait to do it again. This serenity in the snow is new for me. When I was growing up in sunny Southern California, with parents who were both public school educators, skiing wasn’t really something



Bel Young and writer Krista Simmons on a meditative snowshoeing practice through the Fossil Ridge Wilderness.

The cozy log cabins at Eleven’s Taylor River Lodge provide the perfect base for a one-of-akind winter wellness retreat. WELLNESS 2024 • SUNSET


we did. Even in the 1980s, it was an elite sport that required expensive gear, resort passes, and a four-wheeldrive vehicle that could get up to the mountain in the first place. We spent most of our time outdoors at the beach, where I felt perfectly at home as a little mermaid. In college, I’d hang back while my friends jaunted off to Tahoe, knowing they’d regale me with tales of the shred when they returned to the dining hall. And now, dating in my late thirties, I find that the arrival of winter means everyone’s online profiles start to boast which resort passes they have as a



signal of compatibility. All by way of saying, snow always felt exclusive. I didn’t belong, and it wasn’t for me. (Besides, I’d made it this far without any major injuries that come along with the snow sports, so why bother learning now?) Then, a couple years back, I discovered snowshoeing, and everything changed. I loved how meditative and slow the sport was—like hiking, with pow. Not only is it a way to be present with the stunning surroundings, it’s an incredible workout. I loved how being forced to slow down simply by sheer mechanics allowed me to really

drink in my surroundings. It was the exact opposite of barreling down a mountain. And being out alone with nature required no fancy gear or expensive lift ticket, just some snow shoes, a pair of Sorels, poles, and a good trail map. So when I heard that Eleven was hosting a wellness retreat that focused on what I like to call “slow snow” activities—Nordic skiing, snowshoeing, meditating, cold plunges, and forest bathing—I was immediately intrigued. Eleven operates place-based luxury adventure lodges in destinations

From top left: a wood-burning fireplace in-room; embracing a childlike approach to the snow; cloudlike beds inside the cabins; a smoked Old Fashioned; ponderosa pine needles; the great room; overlooking the frozen Taylor River; local trout ramen with an onsen egg; the ultimate plunge.

around the globe known for their natural beauty, like Iceland, Patagonia, and the French Alps. At Taylor River Lodge, a remote retreat outside the stunning mountain town where they’re based, Eleven offers an array of what can only be described as profound, soul-shifting journeys that integrate the cold, no Ikon Pass required. Taylor River Lodge is comprised of eight beautifully appointed log cabins, and the trips truly integrate the greatest parts of the surroundings. Norton, who has a background in kinesiology, launched the annual retreat with the

intention of getting guests to slow down and be present in the environment. “I wanted to create a retreat that was a unique blend of wellness-based adventure, that incorporated small hacks throughout that could be subtly woven into a guest’s life back home,” says Norton. “These retreats are based in connection to environment, each other, and ultimately the self.” To get a sense of the surrounding terrain, we head deep into the Gunnison National Forest for Taylor River’s version of forest bathing. In Japan, this process is called shinrin-roku, and

requires that you fully engage all of your senses to be present in the wilderness. I’ve admittedly done this form of meditation many times while leaf peeping or hiking in the warmer months, but the idea of slowing down in the snow seems foreign. “These retreats are designed to use the cocooning effect of the winter months to drive people inward. The dark, snowy, slow, quiet days of winter help foster time spent alone, nurturing and taking care of yourself, instead of being so driven and directed by outside influences,” says Norton. “The most profound and universal



result is a sense of acceptance of what is. Instead of trying to change the weather, the temperature, their environment, we simply accept and embrace the current circumstances.” Our guide Bel Young, a wilderness first responder and American Institute for Avalanche Research and Education expert, leads us through the sparkling sugar snow stands of the Fossil Ridge Wilderness, where she and Norton highlight everything from snow profiles to using our five senses to experience the terrain, including tasting the needles of the towering ponderosa pines, used by the Ute tribe as medicinal tea. Toward the end of our hike, Norton leads us in sonic meditation, where we zero in on singular sounds in the forest—a sonic drishti, if you will—to home in on individual sounds in the space: the gentle gurgling of a stream, the musical trill of a snowbird, wind rustling through the pines. We make our way back to the lodge, where we’re greeted by an oversize blazing fireplace, an après snow spread of local cheeses, Above: the Taylor River spa, pool, and handmade jams, and charsauna area, where cuterie, and one heck of a ce- cold plungers can warm up or indulge dar-smoked Old Fashioned. in a massage after (The winter wellness retreat soaking in the frooffers zero-proof cocktail zen river. Below: classes for those exploring the flatbreads, charcuterie, and cockdamp lifestyle as well.) For tails from the resdinner, we indulge in trout taurant during the from the nearby river before daily complimentaretreating to our cabins unry après-ski hour. derneath a sky carpeted with stars. This penchant for place-based experiences is reflected in everything from the food to the spa, where therapists use heated stones collected from the river in their massage treatments. And while you are indeed challenged both mentally and physically, there is a sense of restorative healing taking place too, from the deep sleep you’ll get after a guided meditation sinking into marshmallow fluff bedding to a pre-flight yoga session before your return home. And if you’re like me, you’ll be going back with the ultimate souvenier — a deeper appreciation for even the most challenging of life’s seasons.



From top left: Young, a wilderness first responder, leads us through sparkling sugar snow stands; braised short rib; the heated pool; silence and stillness among the trees.



These retreats are designed to use the cocooning effect of the winter months to drive people inward.

Insider MAUI

This month: North Shore and Upcountry, Maui The insiders: Jeana Naluai, owner of Ho’omana Spa

Jeana Naluai is a native Hawaiian cultural practitioner and owner of Ho’omana Spa Maui, which offers authentic Hawaiian lomi lomi massage and Hawaiian spa ritual packages, all done with handmade organic spa products. With generational ties to the land and culture of the North Shore and Upcountry region of Maui, Naluai loves sharing about the unique lifestyle and charm of the region, including the townships of Makawao, Paia, and Kula, which she highlights here. “With the recent wildfire disaster on Maui and the struggle that our community has been through in the aftermath of this tragedy,” she says, “it is an honor to be able to share about some of the areas of the island and businesses that are open and ready to welcome visitors back with Aloha.”

Seasonal diversions and secret travel tips from local experts. French crêpe, “Café Des


sweet and savory crêpes

with “macadamia-nut

Amis serves up delicious

Indulge your sweet tooth

and Indian curry wraps.”

sticky buns and passion-

SHOP For unique, breezy beach

style, spend some time at Imrie. You can also find

whimsical, original artsy

designs at Wings Hawaii.



The town of Kula boasts breathtaking views of South Maui and the

neighboring islands. Take in picturesque vistas as Bike Maui leads you on

epic, fully outfitted rides

down Haleakala’s 10,000-

foot slope. Find freedom in

wood is a noteworthy


merging Upcountry and

along Hana Highway is

arch Collective features

ite North Shore beaches,

“boho-chic boutique

This “quaint surf town

ocean couture. And Mon-

surrounded by my favor-

local artists like Jennifer



Valenzuela and a selec-

The Makawao township is


Bay or Baldwin Beach.”

Visit Haleakalā National

Vida by Sip Me Maui or a


potato (ube) latte at

blackened, with onion

Pick up a “golden chai at

Park or go for a hike in

delightful purple sweet

Order “any fresh catch

Espresso Mafia.”

rings, at Paia Fish Mar-

community known for its

Upcountry paniolo-cow-


saloon-style architecture,

“house-made pasta and

ket.” For something sweet, cool down with Ululani’s Hawaiian Shave Ice. “A

boy flare, evident in the

Stop into Casanova for

and its galleries, eateries,

wood-fired mushroom

shaved ice with a coco-

Freshies Cafe for a “ca-

Another awesome option

and local boutiques.

SHOP Kūlua is “a Hawaiian

company sewing islandinspired designer


favorite is the guava

pizza,” or pop into

nut pudding cream top.”

sual outdoor scene,” plus

is “The Boba Bar Paia’s

Cattle Company‘s sus-

boba.” Or for some fun

burgers made from Maui tainable, grass-fed beef.

taro milk tea or lychee twists on the classic

Wings Hawaii SUNSET • WELLNESS 2024

ma’s Coffee House.”

DRINK Take a tasting tour at

Ocean Organic Vodka

farm and distillery, whose spirits are made with

ocean water and homegrown cane sugar. For a

sunset tasting and dinner duo, drop into Mahalo

Aleworks brewery and

tap room, which is right

beside Marlow, known for their wood-fired pizzas. Or, if fruity bevvies are your speed, indulge in

pineapple wine at Maui Wine near the historic Ulupalakua Ranch.

windsurf breaks at Paia

a great stop after sunrise.

It’s an eclectic, artsy

der’s botanical gardens.

French toast at Grand-

to encounter sea turtles

and world-class surf and

Makawao Forest Reserve.

tour of Ali’i Kula Laven-

“omelets and banana

where you’re guaranteed

tion of puka jewelry.”


Or indulge in an aromatic

or opt for crave-worthy


clothing,” whereas Drift-

flight with Paraglide Maui.

fruit tarts at La Provence,”


Mahalo Aleworks

Espresso Mafia




Lake Louise Ski Resort

Fairmont Banff Springs




The Fairmont Banff

Trailhead Cafe is a great

Springs is, in one word, iconic. Once you enter

you’ve stepped back in

geous and offers 360-de-

luxury, and comfort. With 10 world-class dining ex-

periences located on-site, there’s almost no need to leave. Other favorites in Lake Louise include The

Post Hotel and the Beaujolais Boutique B&B,

whose hosts provide a

dola is absolutely gorgree views from the

gondola tower. This is

easily the most beautiful

restaurant in Banff. Watch

sweets. The bear claws are a must-try!

you’re on top of the world.

to the most creative and

Or, for an awesome alpine fondue experience, stop by Walliser Stube, fa-

ing the mountains in

sweet treat, stop by The




mountains and feel like

mous for its “Château”


renowned selection of

the sunset over the

wealth of knowledge

when it comes to explor-

Sky Bistro

the go. The Sky Bistro at

Sulphur Mountain Gon-

time to a period of class,

The insider: Louise Tuck, Co-Founder of The Elite Jetsetter

option for breakfast on

through the main doors, you absolutely feel like

This month: Banff and Lake Louise, Alberta

fondue experience. For a Fudgery for their


Shoku Izakaya is home

delicious Asian-inspired

cocktail menu in the Bow Valley. The mango togarashi mojito is essential. Park Distillery, in Banff

National Park, is a distillery, restaurant, bar, and

store serving local hand-

new friends and explore

fire cuisine.

dog with Snowy Owl Sled

made spirits and camp-


the mountains by sled Dog Tours—one of the

most Canadian activities

With some of the best

you can find! Fun fact:

terrain in the Rocky Moun-

the Disney movie Togo.

ise Ski Resort is a must-

or skiing the mountain

snow and most diverse

These dogs were used in

tains, a visit to Lake Lou-

After a long day of hiking

do in winter. On a clear

parks, head south to Koo-

the world-famous blue

mecca for hot springs

Make some cute, furry

the winter.

day you can even spot

tenay National Park, a

lake across the valley.

and tired muscles during


Louise Tuck is a born-and-raised Banff local with a passion for exploration. She and her partner, Rob, founded Elite Jetsetter in 2015, where the duo run a blog and content creation studio focused on luxury travel. When they’re not showcasing some of the region’s unique experiences, they enjoy exploring their beautiful backyard in the Rocky Mountains. Here are their recommendations for the winter wonderland that is the Canadian Rockies in Banff and Lake Louise, which also shines in the upcoming spring shoulder season.



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SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA Elisa Angelone is a licensed acupuncturist, an herbalist, and the curator of Den Mother’s global healing therapies. Guests who step into the urban oasis, inside a 1930s Craftsman on Abbot Kinney, get to experience various modalities, from Japanese acupuncture to Ayurvedic bodywork and Nordic bathing. Here she shares her favorite spots in Venice, inarguably the nexus of L.A.’s wellness community.

The insider: Elisa Angelone, founder of Den Mother

Wanderlust Creamery that are tucked away in the fabric of Venice.

EAT Venice is home to some

of L.A.’s best restaurants. adorable and well-ap-

pointed hotel just steps

from the beach. Another

STAY Rent a cute Airbnb like

The Howland House, on

the Venice Canals over-

looking the water. Evening and early morning walks

along the canals are just magical, and give you a special insight into the

ways that some lucky locals get to live their lives.

There are very few hotels in Venice, but thankfully

the team behind Gjelina has opened Vitorrja, an

Sunset staff favorite: the

Venice V Hotel, a reimagined 1915 landmark right on the Boardwalk and beach.

DO Start your day with a walk along the beach to

Menotti’s Coffee Stop for the delicious oat-milk

Spanish latte. It’s a sweet and creamy drink made

with espresso, condensed milk, and cinnamon that


makes for the perfect

pick-me-up. Once properly caffeinated, head to

Love Yoga for their “love

yoga flow” class, which-

combines Katonah yoga

with Vinyasa flow. Katonah

draws from Chinese medicine, Taoist principles, and sacred geometry, making for an inspiriting and

grounding hourlong practice. After class, you can

grab a delicious vegan ice cream from Wanderlust

Creamery and stroll along the Venice Walk Streets, a peaceful series of four pedestrian-only footpaths

My personal favorite is

Barrique, an authentic

Italian restaurant situated in a two-story yellow cottage on a quiet part of

Main Street. It is as adorable as it gets, with can-

dles on the tables and the most delicious hand-

made beet pasta with

quail ragù served over

cheese fondue. Cobi’s, a Michelin Bib Gourmand winner, has Indonesian

fare and an amazing natural wine selection. The

space is cozy and inviting with a hanging rose garden in the entryway,

Abbott Kinney is The

Great, by designers Emily Current and Merritt Elliott,

who make the best prairie dresses that are quintessentially Venice. Mystic

Journey Bookstore is the spot to go for all crystals and ritual objects, and

Anima Mundi is a mod-

ern-day herbal apothe-

cary with a tonic bar and

medicinal herbal garden. Electric + Rose has the best elevated tie-dye

sweatsuits and cozy ac-

tivewear pieces that just

scream Venice Beach. Everything is designed and

handmade in Los Angeles and is inspired by the

Venice Beach lifestyle.


ing room that feels like

tution directly on the

ed back in time. I love

come the perfect place to

garden patio, and a din-

Crudo e Nudo for oysters

and prawns a la plancha. For something more casual, La Isla Bonita is a

taco truck on Rose Ave-

nue and 4th Street run by a father-and-son duo that has been around

Fig Tree is a Venice insti-

Boardwalk and has bego for happy hour—you can get natural wine,

seasonal cocktails, and

iconic sunset views. The

newer French establish-

ment, Coucou, celebrates aperitif culture, serving

some of the most beauti-

since 1987. I love getting

ful artisanal cocktails. And

to go, and walking down

of dancing, Winston

the ceviche with tostadas to the beach for a little sunset picnic. SUNSET • WELLNESS 2024

One of our neighbors on

seating in an outdoor

you have been transport-



for live music and a night House is the home for music in Venice.


This month: Venice, California

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You tap into ancestral Indige-

nous knowledge and make it applicable for our modern needs. What would you say is the one

most applicable lesson you’ve

learned from your time growing up in Costa Rica and working with Indigenous peoples?

We all have a special ability to listen and connect to nature. Indigenous peoples don’t view nature as separate from us. She is viewed as a living being, and we as extensions of her. Nature is observed as a super intelligence that pulsates source energy and

knowledge to everything and everyone. To not harness this innate and deeply intuitive connection that we humans all have births disorder and destruction on a collective level. This natural intuitive knowing and connection to nature is a vital component to healing traditions. Spring is a time of rebirth and rejuvenation. How can we

apply those ideas of harnessing nature and working it into our wellness routines using plant medicine in a sustain-

able way? Are there any herbs that you like using in particular during this seasonal shift?

Absolutely! Spring herbs are some of the most mineralizing medicines out there. The fresh leaves sprouting after frost or winter are imbued with resilience and nutrition. Some that I love are nettle, dandelion root, chickweed, horsetail, wild mustard, and more. In the fall, in preparation for winter, key medicines for immunity and resilience are rosehips, burdock, nettle, and elderberry.

With a new shop opening in Venice, Adriana Ayales is the herbalist to the stars. We spoke to her about the state of wellness in the West. Interview by KRI STA S I M M O N S

Adriana Ayales is a rainforest herbalist, medicine maker, educator, and lady-behind-the-curtain at Anima Mundi. Her business is dedicated to facilitating ancient healing remedies to the modern world, and she recently opened up a location of her tonic bar and healing garden on Rose Avenue in Venice. Born and raised in Costa Rica, Adriana has studied global ancestral healing traditions alongside master herbalists and shamans for nearly 15 years. She uses that experience to inform the work at her aesthetic farm-topharmacy space, which aims to preserve forms of indigenous botany.

years working in the space. What are some exciting trends in wellness that you see on the horizon?

I think spiritual well-being will continue to be one of the most sought-after necessities. With the rise of microdosing and herbal stacking, I can see people looking deeper to find the true meaning of wellness. Mental health is huge, and a foundational pillar to our longevity and general well-being. What’s the one wellness tip you’d have for folks this year? I absolutely love adaptogens, as they greatly help us with adaptability and oxidative stress. Considering the global circumstances, chemically, atmospherically, and mentally, adaptogens and adaptogenic-like plants greatly help us stay regulated and protected. I’m also a huge believer in nervous system nutrition. Plants and foods that can greatly help regulate the nervous system, and support growth and repair as much as possible.

SUNSET (ISSN 0039-5404) publishes 6 issues per year in regional and special editions by S. Media International Corporation, P.O. Box 15688 Beverly Hills, CA 90209. Periodicals postage paid at Oakland, CA, and at additional mailing offices. POSTMASTER: Send all UAA to CFS. (See DMM 507.1.5.2.) Nonpostal and military facilities: Send address corrections to Sunset Magazine, PO Box 680 Lincolnshire IL 60069. Vol. 247, No. 1. Issue: Feb/Mar 2024. Printed in U.S.A. Copyright © 2024 S. Media International Corporation. All rights reserved. Member Alliance for Audited Media. Sunset, The Magazine of Western Living, The Pacific Monthly, Sunset’s Kitchen Cabinet, The Changing Western Home, and Chefs of the West are registered trademarks of S. Media International Corporation. No responsibility is assumed for unsolicited s ­ ubmissions. Manuscripts, photographs, and other material submitted to P.O. Box 15688 Beverly Hills, CA 90209 can be acknowledged or returned only if accompanied by a self-addressed, stamped envelope. For 24/7 service, please email You can also call 1-800-777-0117 or write to Sunset Magazine, PO Box 680 Lincolnshire IL 60069. U.S. subscriptions: $24.95 for one year.




Plant Power to the People

You’ve seen the industry of wellness shift over your many

C L U B M O N A C O . C O M

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Design Better

“The key to the design was openness. We wanted to bring the outdoors in, especially on the main level, and allow for outdoor areas on different levels of the home.” Adam Steiner, Architect, Cornerstone Architects

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